You may be leaking precious time and energy without even realizing if you don’t ask few important productivity questions. Here they are:
Do you forget stuff in few weeks even if you study it diligently?
I know the answer. Almost everyone faces this forgetfulness.
Wouldn’t it be awesome if we can retain what we study (wider connotation than just academics) for long?
Yes, it would be… and it is possible through spaced repetition.
If you’re a student who wants to crack the toughest exams out there, you would’ve marveled the effortless ease with which the brightest consistently finish in top 0.1 percentile.
If you’re a wannabe tennis player, you would be in awe of the games of Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic.
“Their brain, their body is wired differently.”
“They’ve natural talent.”
“They’ve innate ability.”
These thoughts cross your mind, and you convince yourself to live a ‘normal’ life because you can’t change your wiring, because you can’t create talent out of nowhere, and because blessings are divine.
What if I tell you that these things matter much, much less – if at all they do – than you think? (As we’ll learn later in the post, wiring, for example, depends only on our experiences.) What if I tell you that there is a path accessible to everyone that can take you too to the dizzying levels of some of these greats?
You think you’re studying/ working ten hours a day.
What if I tell you, you aren’t.
You may be putting in hours by the clock, but the output – and that’s what matters, right? – may be equivalent of just four hours of focused study/ work.
High-achievers know this difference.
Everyone wants that small edge, which can put her/ him ahead of others. One such area is to squeeze in more effective hours into your study schedule.
What if you can stretch your effective daily study hours from eight to ten? It’s hard, no doubt, but achievable.
It’s an ultra-competitive world. In academic tests at national/ international level, if you don’t finish in top few percentiles, sometimes under 1%, you’re unlikely to achieve your goal of getting admission to your dream college or that coveted fellowship.
In pursuit of such tough goals, diligent students go all out to get an edge on any front – study material, tutors, diet, energy boosters, and so on.
And even Physical Exercise (PE)!
You read it right. Physical exercise. Physical exercise of a certain kind, though. And it’ll help you even if you’ve a modest goal of just improving in your most challenging subjects.
More than 90 percent of American High School students and nearly 70 percent of college students are chronically sleep deprived, resulting in academic and health consequences.
If you’re like most, then you too are getting far less sleep than recommended for a balanced life.
National Sleep Foundation put together a high-powered panel of 18 scientists and researchers from reputed medical associations in the U.S. to study our daily sleep requirement. The panel gleaned through more than 300 studies, and came up with following recommendations:
Have you switched to Facebook or checked the score of your favourite sports just before starting an important, though unpleasant, assignment from your school?
Have you stared at the blank screen of your laptop for long and then moved to something else when writing the first few paragraphs of the paper due next week?
Have you enjoyed planning and brainstorming sessions a lot, but pushed deadlines when it came to execution?
We all have fallen to these when starting out on an important task, and wondered, “How can I move my butt, and then not quit?
You take the seat in your favorite corner, and open your math notes. Today you’re determined to complete the assignment you’ve been procrastinating for almost a week.
However, just before starting, you decide to check your inbox. You check, and you don’t find anything worth your attention. (That’s what is going to happen if you check too frequently.) Because it got done so quickly, your digital-thirst isn’t quenched. You decide to skim your Facebook feed as well. After all, you plan to be off internet for three hours immediately after this.
You’re on a slippery slope now. You like (thumbs up) few pictures, leave few comments, chuckle at a funny video, and then click on a click-bait BuzzFeed article, which lets you slip further to a YouTube video. And then few suggested videos from YouTube’s long list of seductive thumbnails and titles…
By now, you’re neck deep in entertainment and procrastination, ignoring what you set out to do.
Sunlight is better known for synthesis of vitamin D in our bodies and for improving our moods. But what is less appreciated is that it can also make us more productive.
If you study in sunlight (not direct exposure, though), you’ll be significantly more alert, less drowsy in the afternoon, thereby increasing your productivity. As a result, you’ll have a more effective study schedule and you’ll be able to study longer without getting tired.